The wonders of hemp soon will become American grown again with the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill. Hemp has been illegal for nearly a century, with a brief period during World War 2 where it was legalized to help the war efforts. Today though, we should be able to benefit from the industrial applications of hemp more than ever before. With higher consumptions levels with a larger population than we had a hundred years ago by nearly 10 fold, hemp will be more important than ever. Furthermore, technological innovations have propelled the wonders of hemp to be able to impact a plethora of different industries.
Most people know hemp can be made into paper, textiles, fuel, and food. It also has applications for livestock feed, concrete, insulation, paint, and even plastics. All of which can be grown and cultivated in a more environmentally manner with the application of the hemp plant. The exciting world of hemp is just started for most American states and we could not be more thrilled to start to share the wonderful world of hemp with patients with today’s post in the Peak Dispensary blog.
Let’s dive in and take a deeper look.
The application of hemp as a paper product may become it’s most useful. From the thousands of textbooks, newspapers, and other literature items within the world, paper products have a huge reach. With this, hemp can be produced at a far more environmentally friendly rate compared to trees which are often used to make paper. It is also estimated that hemp paper can be recycled up to 7 or 8 times while paper from trees will only last around 3. Furthermore, hemp only takes around 100 days to produce while trees can often take up to a decade, which means a single plot of land could be cultivated for paper production 30 more times with hemp compared to trees. All and all, paper products will probably have the biggest impact on your daily lives with the replacement of more hemp-based paper products becoming the norm.
Textiles, Rope, & Clothing
One of the main reasons hemp was previously legalized was during World War Two. What became known as Hemp for Victory, the United States government legalized the plant to help with military gear productions. Specifically, the military needed uniforms, rope, and military-grade bags which could be used for the troops in Europe and the Pacific. This brief period of Hemp for Victory saw the rise to the hemp textile industry. Today consumers have access to a variety of clothing and apparel brands which tout their 100% hemp production process. These products are often said to have a better feel than other clothing materials and some suggest they last longer against wear and tear too. Hemp as a rope or textile product makes for the perfect example of a real use case for the cousin-plant to medical marijuana.
The wonders of hemp-based plastics are yet to truly be enjoyed by the world. The world of molded plastics offers a plethora of applications for the hemp plant. These include products ranging from lawn chairs to plastic forks and spoons. The great thing about hemp plastics rests with the fact it is recyclable and biodegradable. While regular plastic materials can take up to 450 years to degrade, hemp is a plant and therefore degrades exponentially faster than the man-made alternative. This alone will also have a huge impact on your day to day life perhaps more than any other category of hemp applications discussed, competing alongside the hemp-based paper.
Hemp-based biofuels should help the world get away from fossil fuels. The research within the world of hemp biofuel will have to be developed further for us to know with any certainty but there are some promising signals to start. We have already learned there is a benefit to hemp as a biofuel. For example, hemp can actually grow in less favorable conditions than corn or wheat, other alternative biofuels. Furthermore, automakers already use some hemp-based products as plastic parts used in the production of cars. Surely, as a biofuel or not, hemp will have a large role to play in the future of human transportation.
Another exciting and less known application of hemp is used as a concrete alternative, known as Hempcrete. Hempcrete could one day provide builders an input which creates less harmful chemicals than current concrete. Furthermore, the hempcrete product has a zero carbon emission production process. One of the less beneficial features of hempcrete though, it will not be suitable for the construction of load-bearing walls. This is because the substance takes a long time to dry after being created. All and all though, there could be a huge environmentally friendly way to continue with construction in the future that directly involves more usage of hempcrete.
Hemp can also work for construction projects which involve insulation. As many homes and business across America have insulation as a key component to their construction, hemp may prove to be a great alternative to current insulation products. The hemp insulation products of today can help absorb moisture, keeping the temperature inside at a more suitable level. Thus there are some homeowners who have turned to hemp insulation as a cost savings measure. Furthermore, hemp insulation is resistant to mold which has exciting applications for trying to create and sustain a healthier living environment through construction materials produced from the hemp plant.
The hemp plant also produces a versatile oil which can be consumed if properly prepared but also has other industrial purposes. These include working as a wood finish to help seal furniture and protect it from moisture damage. Online resources suggest hemp oil can work as a great topcoat for a paint job as well. Furthermore, the oil is perfect for leather boots or shoes which need a little refreshing to brighten em back up.
Hemp can be thought of as many other types of nuts in the world. The hemp plant also produces within its hempseed a rich protein source and source of excellent oils. Furthermore, the plant is full of Omega-3 fatty acids and the popularized cannabidiol compound, known as CBD. There are a plethora of CBD companies entering the market to offer hemp foods. There are also a ton of great applications for hemp as a food. Hempseed, for example, considered a superfood, is finding its way into more and more holistically minded recipes. The hemp plant has a huge variety of different compounds or components which can be added to our food for a healthier alternative.
Another great and not as often thought of application of the hemp plant includes animal feed. The plant can produce a ton of great nutrients for livestock which consumes a huge portion of the world’s produced agricultural products as it is. With that said, hemp may become a future staple cornerstone to the beef or poultry industry which could both be a great application for hemp-based animal feed.
Body Care Products
As you probably have seen from your local dispensary, cannabis also has applications within body care products such as lotions and creams. The hemp plant is the same with many different applications available within the body care industry with products such as lotions, salves, creams, and make-up products. There are a variety of lotions and other body care products which are actually transdermal and can help users with actual medical conditions. Hemp derivatives and CBD specifically, will surely pop up more and more frequently into your make-up or wellness products.
All and all, it is quick to see the many different applications of the hemp plant from this list of industrial uses. We with the Peak Dispensary believe hemp has a wonderous future within the United States and world aboard. We are thrilled to see how far hemp has come from being a prohibited plant to the now widely accepted crop it is today in 2019.
Until next time friends, stay well!